by slave jean
Mastery-slavery and Finances
Finances are simple, right? Masters are rich and take care of slaves with opulent extravagance. Whatever funding that slaves bring to masters, it is dealt with much like a feudal dowry - all of it becomes the property of the master solely. Slaves have no need of funds since a Master provides for them totally. And of course, this all takes place immediately upon the bestowment of a collar.
While the above may seem silly or even foolhardy if moved from fiction into reality, it isn’t far from what many master-slave relationships eventually arrive at. The important qualifier is “eventually”. It is rare, however, that such is the initial arrangement in a master-slave relationship.
The financial arrangements between masters and slaves are numerous. While not covering anywhere near all of the possibilities, I would like to lay out some possibilities to be considered when a master collars a slave or in the time leading up to that moment. In other words, finances, as conflict-resolution, should be discussed and practiced in the early stages as a master and slave begin to explore each other for a possible relationship. Finances should not be a surprise element nor an unexplored expectation.
It is not inconceivable that either a master or a slave is financially independent. There are many masters who are of retirement age and are comfortably settled in their finances. And though slaves may likely be movers-and-shakers in the business community with a lovely golden parachute nearby, the more usual background is one of steady employment with modest savings. Or, there may have been little employment in the past due to a previous relationship’s living arrangement. Either way, money may be tightly budgeted and scarce. Additionally, since many people in the community seem to find their niche in leather later on in life, there may be legal entailments upon any income that master or slave live upon, such as child support and alimony. And for some slaves who have been newly divorced, learning how to live and support oneself may be a new experience in life as well. The possibility of giving up that responsibility may be frightening or ecstatic. Either way, the corresponding master would do well to understand the history and emotional attachments tied to present financial circumstances for each person.
A master/slave dyad will benefit from the possibility that one or the other has a penny-pinching, dollar-cost-averaging bookkeeper personality among them. This person enjoys and cares about the pesky details of bill-paying and budget-planning. Whether master or slave, this person has the ability to manage books, keeping due dates in mind, or in a system so that bills are never late. Credit cards are paid off immediately and large items are budgeted prior to purchase, minimizing the finance charges associated with procurement. This person can sacrifice present joys for future plans. This master or slave understands the value of interest, whether paying out or earning, and works to minimize debts expeditiously.
If the accountant in the relationship is the master, then as a slave and master begin their relationship dance the master may ask to see the financial records of the slave. How orderly they are, or not, will tell the master quite a bit about the slave. Setting up financial goals - small future ones - and witnessing how well the slave meets those goals also gives the master valuable insight into those skills or struggles that the slave possesses. If the slave struggles and fails more than succeeds in meeting the goals, the master may set up systems for the slave to follow in managing her money. Notice that at this point nothing has been said about the slave turning over to her master any wages, savings, or investments. The focus is on the behavior surrounding funds rather than the funds themselves. The finances are used in multiple paths to inform the master of the slave’s range of need for guidance, in the slave’s ability in obedience, in the slave’s ability to seek assistance when in trouble, and in giving to the slave a beginning path of expectation of concrete care.
If the accountant is the slave, the master has the opportunity to avail himself of the slave’s service. The slave can be requested to sort through the master’s bills, balance the checkbook, examine any savings or investments, and given a few goals of the master’s, establish a budget for the master. It is then up to the master to implement that budget or not.
In these early opportunities - the master accountant who sets systems for the slave and the slave accountant who services the master with a budget - both master and slave begin to know the financial status of each other, begin a process by which both master and slave can gauge the self-control of the other. For a slave should be able to implement the systems set in place by her master, or, should be able to go to her master with earnest desire to obey and seek assistance to obey when the order is beyond her capabilities. A master who seeks the service of a slave to set up a budget and the guidelines for the budget, learns much of the slave in the budget that is then presented. Does the budget include all that the master requested? Did the master request the impossible? Did the slave find a way to meet that request? Did the slave ask questions of the master regarding personal spending habits? Needs? Priorities? Weaknesses? Or did the slave look through the checkbook history to see how funds had been spent in the past to glean how they were likely to be spent in the future? In other words, a master who has an accountant slave has the opportunity to receive a very practical service as well as examine the slave’s behavior. If the master gives budget guidance that is impossible to meet, how the slave responds to that also gives immense feedback to the master about how the slave sorts through the impossible. Does the slave get frustrated with the impossible? Or does the slave recognize impossibilities as such and humbly approach the master with that inability, asking for guidance as to setting priorities.
The Profligate Spendthrift
If both the master and slave are financially challenged, finding it difficult to either remain employed or to stay out of debt, the need to examine finances in the early stages is even more important. If a master does not have the skills to lay out a financial roadmap for himself or examine knowledgably the slave’s financial books, and if the slave doesn’t have the skills to provide the service without the guidance of the master or without her own personal history and character, then a frank discussion about spending habits and history (both the master’s and the slave’s) is a good idea. If the master is considering collaring a slave and the slave brings with her a huge debt, how that debt will be managed needs to be considered prior to the event. Similarly, if the slave expects to be cared for when collared, the slave should know that the master has self-control. If the master has a habit of over-spending his credit, how does he deal with that? Does he take our consolidation loans to pay off credit cards? Does he keep credit cards maximized-out? If a master has difficulty reigning in his own spending habits, how will he be able to manage a slave’s spending habits? What would be a good temporary plan for the master and slave considering a relationship to attempt? Would applying for a credit card together and putting agreed upon purchases on it, paying it off together help? Many people now explore relationships in long-distance modes. That involves airline tickets and phone bills. How are those costs managed between the two? Additionally, there could be an assignment of clearing a debt within a deliberate amount of time, as a short test. The master could require this of the slave. The master could lay out a goal for himself of a modest savings for a special treat for the master and slave’s enjoyment. These small goals, if shared openly between the two, give an honest appraisal of the challenge each will face together and the opportunity for both master and slave to practice skills that are not habitual. People can change, but only with practice. The greatest ease for change is usually in the dawn of a relationship, when emotions are strong and the desire to please and to make a relationship work is strong. If in that goodness simple goals are not able to be met, then what is the likelihood that later in the relationship there will be any better luck in changing behaviors? Chances are finances will be ongoing struggles. This is fine, if this is what a master and slave desire. Again, it needs to be recognized up front and agreed to in a plan.
When does the Money get Turned Over to Master?
Historically, men have had access to accounting education more formally than women. In the case of Victorian Lord Arthur Munby and his slave (and wife) Hannah Cullwick, she requested that he manage her income for her. The wages she received as a charwoman, housekeeper, and cook were put into an account to earn interest until she was able to retire. The wages that her master managed for her remained her own, even in marriage, and were a part of her self-image and self-confidence. (McClintock pp ).
Even in this real historical relationship, the money that Cullwick earned remained her own. Munby managed it and invested it, but did not use it for himself. He had his own inheritance. The funds that Cullwick earned made it possible for her to keep her independence at the same time that she called herself slave and devoted herself to her master and husband. Her letters and journals are filled with pride in both independence and slavish devotion.
Does that mean that a slave never turns her earnings over to a master? Or does a slave only turn her earnings over to a master to manage, but not to spend? As I stated in the opening sentence, there are as many ways to manage finances as there are masters and slaves. They just don’t occur in the initial months of the relationship.
Finances have long consequences. Finances effect our children and can have costly consequences if mismanaged or leapted into without adequate thought. As the “account” and the “spendthrift” show, there can be numerous ‘tests’ to play out before understanding how a master or slave work with money in their individual lifestyle. How either manage finances when in a relationship complicates the picture. Another test is to take a short trip together and agree upon how the expenses will be shared. Do both master and slave live up to the agreement? If the master or slave is unwilling to open their books to the other - after an initial amount of time and effort at getting to know each other has occurred - a person has to ask why that would be? If a slave is ready to proclaim her body and spirit to be owned by a master, but is not ready to open her finances to the same person, then something is amiss. And vice versa, if a master is willing to claim that he is able to care for a slave, but is unwilling to open his books to show that he is able to do so, or that he has a plan to do so, then something is amiss. How will the rent or mortgage be paid? How much life insurance will be held on the master or slave? Who pays for the car payment? Is a professional wardrobe necessary for the slave who works outside of the home? Does the money come out of the slave’s income? Is there a joint checking account? Does the slave have a personal checking account? Is there any investment portfolio? If you move in together, who will claim the house for tax purposes? If you move in together, whose name is on the lease? How is the rent paid? How is the food budgeted? Is there a legal domestic arrangement for health insurance? If the slave isn’t employed outside of the home, what would be the expectation for spending money?
These are questions that are best answered before any consideration of moving in together, and I submit, they should be discussed even before collaring. Our hopes and desires, our dreams and ideals are what we strive to achieve. If we start with that and work with our challenges in reaching those, then we can begin to carve the path that will shape that as closely as possible.